Following project construction, it is important to contract with an independent third party to inspect the system to ensure it is operating to specifications, also known as commissioning the system. A post-construction commissioning plan is recommended for inclusion in the RFP
Design and Commissioning Checklist:
The DOE’s PV Project Design and Commissioning Checklists (Appendix B, pages 83–86) can serve as a reference during the project’s final design and commissioning phases with the developer. .
Once the system is built and commissioned, the process for monitoring ongoing system performance will depend on the ownership model and what is specified in the contract, as described in Phase 5. Ongoing operations and maintenance are often managed by the third-party owner (assuming a third-party ownership model), while your city will manage or contract for these services under a direct ownership model. In either case, it is important for your city to track project performance against specific metrics—including solar production and financial results—monthly, if not more frequently.
This is also a good opportunity for your city to display this information publicly, within the building or somewhere on-site, as well as through an online system for viewing by the broader community.